Select a range of questions to practise your responses for your interview. The aim is to think of ways to answer different types of questions. Do not memorise your answers.
The selection criteria and position description will provide you with an idea of what interview questions to expect. Most employers create questions that test your capacity to meet the selection criteria.
These sample interview questions are grouped into the different types of questions you might be asked.
Often an interview starts with an ice-breaker question to help develop the rapport between the interviewer and interviewee.
The interviewer may ask you to expand on information in your resume.
You may be asked questions about your academic background and how it relates to the job you have applied for.
You could be asked questions about your knowledge of the organisation.
These questions check that your career goals match the job you are applying for.
These questions assess your awareness of your qualities, skills or areas where you need further development.
When answering the weakness question, pick a weakness that:
An employer may be interested in your technical knowledge and skills and ask questions around related issues.
Hypothetical questions evaluate your problem solving skills.
Behavioural questions are the most popular of all types of interview questions. Interviewers expect you to respond with specific examples from your experiences. They are used because employers believe past behaviour is a good indication of future behaviour.
The behaviours employers are looking for are usually based around employability skills such as teamwork, communication, problem solving, initiative, etc. These questions often start with a phrase such as, 'Tell me about a time when you …', 'Describe a situation when you …'.
Example: Can you tell me about a time when you used your initiative to improve something in the workplace?
To answer, use the STAR approach. This stands for Situation, Task, Action and Result. It is a way of structuring your answer to show what you have learned from your experiences.
|S = situation||Briefly describe the situation or scene.||I was working in a large retail hardware store as a customer service assistant.|
|T = task||Say what needed to be done to address the situation and what your role and responsibilities were.||Our shift team had the worst safety record in the store and we needed to improve it.|
|A = action||Say what you did and how you did it. Include your reasons if they are useful||I volunteered to be the safety representative and used my science studies background to explain to people good safety practices and why they were important. I arranged for safety to be a regular item on the agenda of staff meetings. I worked with my team on posters, which we placed in common staff areas to raise awareness.|
|R = results||Say what happened as a result of your action.||People became more aware of safety. Compliance improved and the number of incidents dropped. Management noticed and gave us an award to acknowledge our improvement.|
Employers like to see evidence of other acheivements and activities. These experiences can help you gain valuable employability skills.